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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:46 am 
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No, I do not think he is a great pass catching RB if you are comparing him to say somebody like Marshall Faulk.

In 2014 Bell was Faulk-like, but that was before the knee injuries.

In 2014 he averaged 10.3 yards per catch and had 10 receptions over 20+ yards and 3 of those were over 40+ yards. That is explosive, that is dangerous.

In 2017 he is averaging 5.2 yards per catch and has 0 receptions over 20+ yards. If you count the 3 playoff games, if you look at his last 9 games played he is averaging 4.7 yards per catch. We are seeing him tackled and brought down for negative yardage, on both carries and catches, with more frequency.

When you look at how much they target him in the passing game, and how ineffective he is at getting first downs, well, I for one wish they would look elsewhere to pick up first downs. In 2014, yeah, throwing to Bell was a great option but now? Let us try something else.

Bell has been targeted 39 times and has only 8 first downs to show for it. A 20% first down percentage blows. In 2014 that first down percentage on targets was 40%.

Throwing to Bell to pick up first downs seems pointless to me. And having pass plays that are designed with that in mind are doubly so. I look at JuJu who has a stranglehold on that slot WR job now. He has been targeted 23 times and has 12 first downs to show for it. That 52% leads the team. Brown is only at 40%.

I get that people think Bell is back, everything is fine, but our offense is still not good. For all of that rushing yards, for all of that time of possession in this past game, the score was 12 -10 with 6:13 on the clock. Then it was 19-13 with KC at the Pittsburgh 40 with 1:12 left. I fail to see how this offense is going to get past NE and get us to the Super Bowl and win it playing this small ball. All we are doing is giving the opposing team more chances to stay in the game and putting more pressure on our defense to lose it in the end. And all because our offense can't score points.

Forget about 30 points a game, I would be happy with 24 points a game, isn't that possible? Please? Minus the special teams TD, this offense is scoring 18.5 points per game.

This infatuation with Bell and this propaganda of him being like a WR out there is bullshit. They need to be using JuJu and hell, even Rogers on picking up first downs, they need to be getting the TEs involved as well. Haley/Ben are making it too easy for this offense to stall by ignoring all of these other options. A big part of it is all of this excessive targets to Bell.

I have always preached about having a RB who could catch 60 passes and run for over 1,000 yards, but they are taking it to an extreme where it is counter productive. Again, is Bell getting 100 receptions but averaging 5 yards a catch in the best interest of this team, of this offense. Wouldn't it be better if Bell had 60 receptions for the season and that surplus of 40 receptions went to JuJu and Vance McDonald? I think that it would, and I think that would make an offense that could score 30 points a game.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:33 am 
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^

Great post. I just saw Tennessee hang 35 at home. We score 9 against the Jags. Something is not right with this offense and it won’t be until Haley gets rid of the stale, unimaginative playcalling.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:47 am 
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FC wrote:
I would be happy if Bell did not line up a single play out wide.

Bell is an elite runner

Bell is a threat anytime he touches the ball

Linebackers safeties Dlinemen have to account for Bell when he is lined up at running back

Throwing windows expand when defenders are hesitant...Bell slows down front 7's


Totally agree!


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:54 am 
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Scunge wrote:
I get that people think Bell is back, everything is fine, but our offense is still not good.


Literally no one on the board thinks that everything is now magically fine.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:02 am 
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Scunge wrote:
No, I do not think he is a great pass catching RB if you are comparing him to say somebody like Marshall Faulk.

In 2014 Bell was Faulk-like, but that was before the knee injuries.

In 2014 he averaged 10.3 yards per catch and had 10 receptions over 20+ yards and 3 of those were over 40+ yards. That is explosive, that is dangerous.

In 2017 he is averaging 5.2 yards per catch and has 0 receptions over 20+ yards. If you count the 3 playoff games, if you look at his last 9 games played he is averaging 4.7 yards per catch. We are seeing him tackled and brought down for negative yardage, on both carries and catches, with more frequency.

When you look at how much they target him in the passing game, and how ineffective he is at getting first downs, well, I for one wish they would look elsewhere to pick up first downs. In 2014, yeah, throwing to Bell was a great option but now? Let us try something else.

Bell has been targeted 39 times and has only 8 first downs to show for it. A 20% first down percentage blows. In 2014 that first down percentage on targets was 40%.

Throwing to Bell to pick up first downs seems pointless to me. And having pass plays that are designed with that in mind are doubly so. I look at JuJu who has a stranglehold on that slot WR job now. He has been targeted 23 times and has 12 first downs to show for it. That 52% leads the team. Brown is only at 40%.

I get that people think Bell is back, everything is fine, but our offense is still not good. For all of that rushing yards, for all of that time of possession in this past game, the score was 12 -10 with 6:13 on the clock. Then it was 19-13 with KC at the Pittsburgh 40 with 1:12 left. I fail to see how this offense is going to get past NE and get us to the Super Bowl and win it playing this small ball. All we are doing is giving the opposing team more chances to stay in the game and putting more pressure on our defense to lose it in the end. And all because our offense can't score points.

Forget about 30 points a game, I would be happy with 24 points a game, isn't that possible? Please? Minus the special teams TD, this offense is scoring 18.5 points per game.

This infatuation with Bell and this propaganda of him being like a WR out there is bullshit. They need to be using JuJu and hell, even Rogers on picking up first downs, they need to be getting the TEs involved as well. Haley/Ben are making it too easy for this offense to stall by ignoring all of these other options. A big part of it is all of this excessive targets to Bell.

I have always preached about having a RB who could catch 60 passes and run for over 1,000 yards, but they are taking it to an extreme where it is counter productive. Again, is Bell getting 100 receptions but averaging 5 yards a catch in the best interest of this team, of this offense. Wouldn't it be better if Bell had 60 receptions for the season and that surplus of 40 receptions went to JuJu and Vance McDonald? I think that it would, and I think that would make an offense that could score 30 points a game.


Great stuff Scunge

I have seen a lot of angst on the board this season over Ben's deep ball. I'm not worried at all, and here's why...

A couple seasons ago Ben went on a streak rivaling Bradshaw at throwing the deep ball. I have never seen a better deep ball thrower than Bradshaw. Ben was that good.

I argued on the board at that time that we needed to keep throwing them. We were not among the great offenses in the league in terms of efficiency, but on any given day we were the most dangerous.

I don't know if we are going to see that version of Ben again. But we don't have to.

I agree with Scunge, that if we win the Lombardi this season the offense is going to look similar to what he laid out in his post.

It might be more running the football to set up the pass and that's fine with this current group. Whatever works. Most importantly it's what we do with the passing game when we do throw the football.

I'm much more concerned about the mid range game than the deep ball with this version of Ben. We aren't winning the Lombardi living off the horizontal bullshit and dump offs to Bell. We have to get wr's and McDonald running free over the vertical middle of the field.

We also have to find a way to improve in the RZ as we all know.


Last edited by Havoc on Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:47 am 
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He used to be a great receiving back. Before the injuries. Scunge is 100% correct. A great third down back has to have speed to create mismatches. Bell doesn't have that anymore. Does anyone remember the play versus KC where Bell catches the ball over the middle. There isn't anyone remotely near him other than a safety. The old Bell would have easily juked this guy and been off to the races. 2017 Bell can't get by him in the open field and he is tackled a half yard short of the first.

Bell is going get his running yards between the tackles and off tackle. He is not however scaring anyone in space the way many NFL 3rd down backs do. That's a real problem now for this offense.

I agree that we have to get the TEs more involved and keep feeding Juju and Rogers. 3rd down has been a real problem.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:57 am 
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I think this year has proven Bell isn't worth $15m. Might not even be worth the $12m we offered him.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:30 am 
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Quote:
Wouldn't it be better if Bell had 60 receptions for the season and that surplus of 40 receptions went to JuJu and Vance McDonald


Absolutely.
I think, hope, each game, that the Ben to JuJu and Ben to McDonald connections and sync continue to grow.
We know McDonald is alot faster than Jessie James. He needs to be that seam buster. Slant to the hash marks pass plays that we saw Ben miss once and connect a second time.

JJ does not need to be on the field 55 of 63 snaps.
McDonalds - 31 snaps
Grimble - 0

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:51 am 
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Stosh-67 wrote:
Quote:
Wouldn't it be better if Bell had 60 receptions for the season and that surplus of 40 receptions went to JuJu and Vance McDonald


Absolutely.
I think, hope, each game, that the Ben to JuJu and Ben to McDonald connections and sync continue to grow.
We know McDonald is alot faster than Jessie James. He needs to be that seam buster. Slant to the hash marks pass plays that we saw Ben miss once and connect a second time.

JJ does not need to be on the field 55 of 63 snaps.
McDonalds - 31 snaps
Grimble - 0

Good stuff, Stosh. I believe they have much bigger plans for McDonald as he gets more comfortable in this offense. I think he'll be a much bigger part of the picture by the time the playoffs roll around. I've seen him play plenty in his career and he has much more potential than most here realize. It may take a little more time, but he's going to make his mark, imo.

Edit: I'll add that I think Vance (if used right) has the potential to be a much, much better blocking version of Zach Ertz (with a slight step below his hands).


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 11:19 am 
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I thought it was interesting that Eli Rogers was active for this game but only had 13 snaps on offense and was credited with 1 special teams snap. He was not targeted at all.

I have a hard time understanding how he fits in with this team moving forward. You can't just remove JuJu from the field he is your second most productive WR in terms of catch percentage, first down percentage, his blocking, scoring. Brown is not coming off the field. Bryant has to be a presence on the field, the vertical threat.

Do we run 4 wides with Bell and no TEs? Again, I would rather see Vance McDonald on the field, we have to get him involved in this offense, beyond his magnificent blocking in the run game.

The best 5 to get on the field, are Brown, Bryant, JuJu, McDonald and Bell. How does Rogers fit in? That best 5 allows you to use JuJu as a quasi-TE, we have seen how he can crack down on Safeties and Linebackers, Rogers can't do that. And I would argue that Jesse James can't do that either if he were to come on the field to be that second TE.

They need to drastically reduce the number of snaps and targets that Jesse James and Eli Rogers get and dramatically increase the snaps that JuJu and Vance McDonald do get. That is the transition that is starting to take place but it is not happening fast enough for me.

Rogers has seen his snaps go from 39 to 37 to 21 to 13, while JuJu has seen his increase 25, 38, 51, 54, 66, 43, to nearly 67% of the snaps on offense. YES!!! That has to continue. Our three amigos at WR have to be Brown, Bryant and JuJu, that is your best 3 WRs.

At TE I feel the transition to McDonald as the #1 starter is happening, just at a slower pace due to him being signed so late and having to learn the offense on the fly without the benefit of an offseason or training camp. Twice in the past 3 games he has gotten over 30 snaps and they are using him to get the running game going with his blocking. Honestly, I know his pass catching will eventually take off but I have been surprised at his blocking, just did not expect it to be so strong.

I feel like they need to just bite the bullet and give McDonald the majority of the snaps. Say there is 70 snaps a game, yes, they do use two TE sets but the breakdown of snaps has been James seeing 85%, McDonald seeing 26% and Grimble with 6%. They need to flip McDonald and James. Vance needs to be getting the 50-60-70 snaps a game not Jesse James. With more snaps comes more targets and more opportunities to develop as a pass catcher.

This past game James saw 86% of the snaps, 55 snaps, and did not have a single catch. I can't even remember if they even threw a single pass his way. Maybe somebody else can chime in here but when was the last time a Pittsburgh Steeler #1 TE saw 86% of the snaps on offense and wasn't even targeted in the passing game? I think the writing is on the wall with Jesse James, it is almost Vance McDonald time as the #1 TE and it can't come soon enough for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:10 pm 
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Scunge wrote:
This infatuation with Bell and this propaganda of him being like a WR out there is bullshit.
I ain't no expert, but I approve of this message. He was never fast enough to begin with, and less so now after 2 injuries.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:13 pm 
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Scunge wrote:
I thought it was interesting that Eli Rogers was active for this game but only had 13 snaps on offense and was credited with 1 special teams snap. He was not targeted at all.

I have a hard time understanding how he fits in with this team moving forward. You can't just remove JuJu from the field he is your second most productive WR in terms of catch percentage, first down percentage, his blocking, scoring. Brown is not coming off the field. Bryant has to be a presence on the field, the vertical threat.

Do we run 4 wides with Bell and no TEs? Again, I would rather see Vance McDonald on the field, we have to get him involved in this offense, beyond his magnificent blocking in the run game.

The best 5 to get on the field, are Brown, Bryant, JuJu, McDonald and Bell. How does Rogers fit in? That best 5 allows you to use JuJu as a quasi-TE, we have seen how he can crack down on Safeties and Linebackers, Rogers can't do that. And I would argue that Jesse James can't do that either if he were to come on the field to be that second TE.

They need to drastically reduce the number of snaps and targets that Jesse James and Eli Rogers get and dramatically increase the snaps that JuJu and Vance McDonald do get. That is the transition that is starting to take place but it is not happening fast enough for me.

Rogers has seen his snaps go from 39 to 37 to 21 to 13, while JuJu has seen his increase 25, 38, 51, 54, 66, 43, to nearly 67% of the snaps on offense. YES!!! That has to continue. Our three amigos at WR have to be Brown, Bryant and JuJu, that is your best 3 WRs.

At TE I feel the transition to McDonald as the #1 starter is happening, just at a slower pace due to him being signed so late and having to learn the offense on the fly without the benefit of an offseason or training camp. Twice in the past 3 games he has gotten over 30 snaps and they are using him to get the running game going with his blocking. Honestly, I know his pass catching will eventually take off but I have been surprised at his blocking, just did not expect it to be so strong.

I feel like they need to just bite the bullet and give McDonald the majority of the snaps. Say there is 70 snaps a game, yes, they do use two TE sets but the breakdown of snaps has been James seeing 85%, McDonald seeing 26% and Grimble with 6%. They need to flip McDonald and James. Vance needs to be getting the 50-60-70 snaps a game not Jesse James. With more snaps comes more targets and more opportunities to develop as a pass catcher.

This past game James saw 86% of the snaps, 55 snaps, and did not have a single catch. I can't even remember if they even threw a single pass his way. Maybe somebody else can chime in here but when was the last time a Pittsburgh Steeler #1 TE saw 86% of the snaps on offense and wasn't even targeted in the passing game? I think the writing is on the wall with Jesse James, it is almost Vance McDonald time as the #1 TE and it can't come soon enough for me.

I agree Scunge. Tomlin is trying to let Eli down easy by stating his major role on this team is on ST as the PR. It's Ju-Ju time for sure. Vance is next, imo. His blocking doesn't surprise me a bit; he just never got a chance to show it much with the Niners. He actually has longer arms (sans Ali), bigger hands and more bench reps than any of our staring O linemen, much less TEs. He's an elite athlete. If he can improve his hands just a little (and I think he will) he might make fans stop longing for the return of the ghost from Heeeeath past. He is a very underrated signing. My guess is we see more of him between the 20s and James gets a few more red zone targets.

I believe James got one thrown his way, which he didn't catch. It was covered well and a tough catch.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:15 pm 
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And with Jesse James having a role in terms of two TE sets, wouldn't it be better to have Rosie Nix on the field instead?

I look at the times Bell has rushed for over 100 yards this year and it sure seemed like Rosie Nix and Vance McDonald were there blocking there asses off for Bell.

Is James needed out there as a 2nd TE? Nix can be a devastating blocker. With JuJu, Nix and McDonald, that is like an unholy trio of badass blockers that defenses don't want to face. I have lost count of the times that I have seen this trio do pancake blocks on defenders. James? He is soft.

Rosie has shown that he does not have hands of stone as a pass catcher, that I have seen over the years with him. It isn't just a foregone conclusion that he would offer nothing in the passing game, they could still throw check downs to him, and lets face it, James 8.4 yards per catch is pretty dismal. Yes, Rosie only has 4 catches for 21 yards for his career, but he caught 4 of the 5 passes thrown to him, and that 5.3 yard average is equal to what Bell is doing THIS season.

I am not saying that Nix should see 60% of the snaps or anything like that but I think he should get 25-30% of the snaps and that it should come at the expense of less 2 TE sets. To me there is this big black hole sucking up too many snaps that should be going elsewhere on offense and that black hole is Jesse James.

Nix, McDonald, Grimble need more snaps and the way to get them those snaps is to phase out Jesse James.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:37 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 3:43 pm 
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I'd like Bell to see some more receptions as I have him in a PPR league

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:24 pm 
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I dont do fantasy football and actually think it is ultimately bad for the game. It almost seems like some players are more concerned with personal stats and less with winning football games. But that is a topic for another day.

In regards to Bell and Brown seeing so much production, in being such a big part of our offense, isn't is bordering on 70% of our offense? That is ridiculous. I suppose I could get behind them hogging so much of the football if they were producing TDs at a fantastic rate. Is that happening? Nope.

Brown has been targeted 74 times in the passing game and has... just 2 TDs. Bell has been targeted 39 times in the passing game and has... 0 TDs. Those are your #1 and #2 options in the passing game and in 113 targets have produced just 2 passing TDs.

If you project that out over a 16 game season, is that what we want for our offense, no strike that, WHAT WE NEED for our offense? I said before the season that we don't need Brown to have 150 receptions for 2,000 yards and we don't need Bell to have 100 receptions and that if we did it will probably mean that our offense is struggling.

Sure enough that is happening after 6 games. For all of those catches and yards, Brown has just 2 TDs. For all of Bell's production he only has 4 TDs.

My perfect Steeler offense that COULD score 30 points a game is something like this:

Brown, 90 catches
Bell 65 catches
Bryant 60 catches
JuJu 60 catches
McDonald 50 catches

60 catches for everybody else (James,Grimble, Rogers, Hunter, Bey, Connor, Watson)

But that will never happen, JuJu, Bryant and McDonald are never going to be big parts of this offense if Brown and Bell are combing for 210-220 receptions. We have been averaging 385 completions the past two years, but If Brown is chasing Marvin Harrison's 143 or Megatron's 1,964 and Bell is trying to get over 100 and prove to everybody how much he is this great WR as a RB, that leave less for everybody else on offense. And maybe I could get behind the idea of those two chasing the glory if they were scoring TDs and the offense was productive, but they aren't and the offense isn't.

What good is fantasy football glory if you aren't winning games and the offense isn't scoring points? Piss on Brown getting NFL records and Bell trying to prove this or that, I just want an offense to score points, to average over 30 points a game and make it more likely to bring home #7.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:26 pm 
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Bell is an Elite recieving back. He's off to a slow start this year, because he stupidly skipped training camp. And because the offense has mostly been stuck in 2nd gear.

Last season in only 12 games, he had 1884 total yards and 75 catches for 616 yards, 8.2 yds/rec. those are elite numbers for an RB. The talk of him being a WR is bullshit, he's an RB who is a threat running or catching. All RBs get mostly short routes.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:39 pm 
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At least early in the game, Jesse James was springing Bell with big blocks. If he truly sucks at blocking, he is improving. In terms of McDonald, I get damned tired of hearing about potential, and all these measurables. He needs to put up on the field. Bottom line. There is a reason SF didn't think much of him and invested draft picks on other TE's to supplant him. It wasn't because he was young and had great strength, arm length, and other underwear measurables.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:58 pm 
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R S wrote:
At least early in the game, Jesse James was springing Bell with big blocks. If he truly sucks at blocking, he is improving. In terms of McDonald, I get damned tired of hearing about potential, and all these measurables. He needs to put up on the field. Bottom line. There is a reason SF didn't think much of him and invested draft picks on other TE's to supplant him. It wasn't because he was young and had great strength, arm length, and other underwear measurables.


McDonald lacks serious HIG factor.....

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:00 pm 
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Kodiak wrote:
His YPC have been discussed. But I'm wondering if this receiving reputation really doesn't just stem from a few big plays earlier in his career when the defense was sleeping or caught off-guard.

He's not fast, and he's not actually a receiver....I think people felt his shifty-ness and quick feet translate to running good routes and separation, but I'm not seeing it.

He has good hands, but that's only part of the equation. Do you think there's still potential there, or is it time for the infatuation with splitting him out and running a tree to end?

"2nd best" receiver last year? I'm not even sure if he's our 4th or 5th best option in the passing game this year.
Screens and outlets, sure. But maybe it's time to ditch the designed pass plays for this guy.

Good game or not, he looks slower this year.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:01 pm 
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You know, if Bell was averaging 8-9 YPC instead of 5.4 or whatever....might make a big difference in the offense.

We don't have good balance/distribution right now. I'd agree Ben seems to "force" it to AB a bit too much - if he's got half a step in man Ben will try to thread the needle instead of looking for easier throws (if there are many).

I also think Ben has been content to dump-off to Bell, prematurely at times....the old "avoid the sack, stay ahead of the sticks" mantra.


I don't get hung-up on TD stats after just 6 games - not many guys get 1 every week or every other week....a guy with 10 TD's on the year probably gets those in 6 or 7 games. Hopefully an avalanche is coming from AB and Bell.

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:02 pm 
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McDonald has the longest reception by a te on the team so far this season, though, right? More of that, please.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:04 pm 
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Ice wrote:
McDonald has the longest reception by a te on the team so far this season, though, right? More of that, please.


gotta be close to the longest air completion for Ben this year, too

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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:13 pm 
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Kodiak wrote:
Ice wrote:
McDonald has the longest reception by a te on the team so far this season, though, right? More of that, please.


gotta be close to the longest air completion for Ben this year, too


I think the lack of balance in this offense will sort itself out. Call me glass half full, but with all the new faces, missed games/camp/practice, I'm thinking confidence in guys other than AB will grow, and the ball will get spread out better as we go. Just a hunch from an optimist.


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 Post subject: Re: Is Bell really a great receiving back?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2017 8:26 am 
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Scunge wrote:
My perfect Steeler offense that COULD score 30 points a game is something like this:

Brown, 90 catches
Bell 65 catches
Bryant 60 catches
JuJu 60 catches
McDonald 50 catches

60 catches for everybody else (James,Grimble, Rogers, Hunter, Bey, Connor, Watson)


Would be great to see.


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